The final debate is in the books and it was lively. There can be little question, however, over who will be in better shape coming out of the debate. Trump cast this election in plain terms as a choice between the failed politician that is Joe Biden and President Trump—the man of action.
Keep in mind that debates do not happen in a vacuum. They take place during the dynamic of a race.
The current dynamic finds Trump gaining 8 percent in his Rasmussen approval rating in the last ten days. Gallup now finds that, on self-identification, 28 percent of Americans identify themselves as Republicans and 27 percent identify themselves as Democrats. Further, Gallup finds that 56 percent of Americans think they are better off under Trump than under Obama/Biden.
Meanwhile, Trump is racing around the country doing events in front of large crowds that consistently include Democrats and new voters.
For Joe Biden, on the other hand, he finds the polls slipping away from him—he has lost 5 percent in the latest IBD/TIPP in the last week alone. Worse, he is on the defensive. He has been avoiding questions about his son, Hunter Biden, and his laptop. It was so bad that he spent four days off the campaign trial with less than two weeks to go in a campaign. That is unheard of in the television era.
Given that dynamic, by the end of this debate, President Trump won this debate because he will continue to maintain his momentum while Biden failed to create his own.
First, Joe Biden’s (ludicrous) decision to claim his son’s laptop is Russian disinformation will only result in more questions not fewer. A slew of new information is set to come out and Joe Biden will spend the last 10 days of this election avoiding mounting questions that will cloud if not overwhelm his message. That is never good for a candidate.
Biden’s position is supported by a minority of Americans and he cast himself as a danger to jobs everywhere. Indeed, he doubled down on regulations, high taxes, and other costs being pushed on employers. Those, too, are not winning positions.
Third, if anyone is interested in fact checking, Biden lied about his son, his own China/Burisma dealings, whether he ever said he would end fracking (he did), whether he used the word “predator” referring to Black youth (he did), whether during catch and release offenders showed up to their hearings (they overwhelmingly did not), about whether minimum wage increases result in unemployment (they do), that Trump has done “nothing” on drug prices (he has), about supposed Russian bounties on American soldiers (never been verified), and on and on.
Also, for nearly thirty minutes during the debate, Biden looked on edge and angry while Trump was composed the entire time.
Most importantly, nothing Biden said gives him a positive dynamic going forward. He did not turn the corner on any issue and he didn’t frame any issue that will require President Trump to change his path.
President Trump, on the other hand, framed the rest of the campaign in simple terms. Trump versus The Politician. Biden’s 47 years with no accomplishments versus a hectic four successful years for President Trump.
Today, President Trump can go on a 10-day tour of 30+ states and drive home his vision for tomorrow wrapped in American patriotism. Joe Biden, on the other hand, has neither the energy nor the ability to draw a crowd. Instead, he likely will have to fend off reporters at isolated events. That is a losing proposition.
In the final analysis, President Trump reminded people why they sent him to Washington. He ran because of people like Joe Biden and his lack of leadership. That is a winning argument.